The following guidance is primarily for child aged players. 

A child’s appearance may appear alarming to other children. While it is obvious to an adult that it shouldn’t matter, and may not come off as a necessary concern for accommodation, it’s important to communicate with other children in the group in advance, not only for to allow them a better understanding of individuality and differences, but to also reduce any potential negative reaction the impacted child might receive.

This falls back onto pre-session communication, with a focus on discussing how differences are only singular aspects of any person’s identity and nowhere near an accounting of the sum of who they are.

Many conditions have an effect of creating drowsiness or fatigue.  Still others without this effect as a part of their condition, may experience it via medication they may be taking. 

If there is a desire from the player to provide assistance, or if it is preferred by them to remain engaged throughout the session.

  • Take regular breaks and when applicable encourage players to get up, stretch, and hydrate.
  • Ensure that engagement occurs more frequently with the child even if it is not within a turn. 
  • If they provide a dietary restrictions list,  avoid those restricted foods. That can also include sugary or caffeinated beverages.
  • Because fatigue also can affect concentration, allow for additional time on the players turn, and encourage/assist with notetaking.
  • If the need calls for it, you can also shorten session times, group fewer sessions together, and avoid complex session components.

Much like in the case of if a player experiences increased absence or tardiness, you can provide reading materials, puzzles, and components for home use, so that the player can be working toward the end goals of the group on their own time and in their own environment without the structured limitation of a gameplay environment or make use of some form of free online communication tool (google hangouts, roll20, fantasyrealms, etc).

A condition may occur that causes alarm to other players and require a response from you.  Things like Seizures, Vomiting, Loss of Consciousness.  If these occurrences are possible or likely to happen, it is critical to communicate not only the likelihood of it’s occurrence, but the response expected from the player or caregiver/guardian.  This is why it’s important to front load information in the pre-planning session. 

If it’s acceptable to the player or caregiver, communicate the possibility of such an occurrence to the other stakeholders.  Often if symptoms are severe, or occur with regularity, the player may be accompanied by an aide or guardian.  In preplanning ensure that you are accommodating for this individual at the table, and if they can be included in the game play, all the better. 

Most importantly if the player is a minor, immediately contact the child’s guardians/caregivers if an episode occurs, so that they are aware of the situation and can respond accordingly.

Keeping to a regular schedule may be difficult.  Sessions can be designed to be only shorter increments, but chained together so that they can accommodate a group dynamic that can handle longer play times.  Determine a story that can explain the occasional disappearance of a hero between sessions.  Suggest that they are researching another angle to a mystery, holding back to ensure that a camp is secure, listening for a transmission, or decoding a program.  Anything that explains an actual absence can be rolled into the narrative so that gameplay and experience isn’t slowed.
It is also helpful in this situation to recap the prior sessions at the start of each new session in order to keep everyone aware of what is happening, while not calling out the reason.  

While it may not be ideal to the gaming environments dynamic, consider options for remote play, or hybrid remote play using online technologies such as roll20, fantasygrounds, zoom, etc.  A purely remote play session would allow all children to be located within their home or location of choice, while hybrid sessions allows for a single player to remotely connect into a device and interact with a seated group.

Additionally you can encourage children by providing them puzzles or exploratory story lines that they can take or work on at home.  This will encourage them to feel like they are still a part of the team working toward an overall case or adventure.

If the issue is a matter of the availability to travel, you can consider the use of implementing technology such as online tele or video communication.  Most smart devices allow for it, but there are also a host of applications that can be used.  Of course, if the venue that hosts the party is what creates the condition, consider altering the venue to a more accessible location.

The following guidance is for child aged players only.  As of right now, we do not have guidance for adults.

Children who have issues with incontinence are likely to experience anxiety with regard to their condition, and embarrassment if an accident occurs.  

Discreetly inform the child that they are always welcome to excuse themselves to use the facilities.  Additionally scheduling regular breaks over shorter periods of time where children are encouraged to get up, move around, and use any facilities.  This should help to mitigate accidents.  

If an accident occurs, do not overreact.  Calmly escort the child to a restroom and follow instructions laid out by the guardian about how to respond.  Remove any furniture that may have been soiled to be taken care of at a later time if possible so that the disruption is minimized.  As always communication is integral, to acceptance.

The following guidance is primarily for child aged players. I do not as of yet have guidance for adult players.

This applies primarily with regard to other children at the table that interact with a child that has this accommodation need, however it is important to address in order to preserve the emotional needs of the child.  Often if children react negatively or mockingly to a child that displays these symptoms, it could create additional factors like anxiety or a depressive state.

The first step is being aware that these symptoms may occur and discussing with the guardian/caregiver what actions are typically taken that are not seen as objectionable to the child.  If those accommodations can be met then pursue them.

It is also important to communicate in advance with the other children (and their parents/guardians) at the gaming table.  In discussing the needs of children with disabilities, focus on the concept that each child has unique characteristics, and while the disability and symptoms exhibited is one of them, it does not make up the whole of who they are.  If it’s possible for the other children to meet with the child’s caregiver, it may allow for questions to come up that may not have been asked, or may have otherwise unfortunately come up during the session.  While playing, encourage the idea that the children are a part of a team, and that as teammates, it is one of the greatest goals of a hero to be supportive of each other.

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